Everyday, without thinking, the majority of us will apply skincare over our body, grab a quick bite to eat of breakfast before we head out the door to work. The thing is, what you may not know is that just because a product claims to do wondrous benefits to your skin such as ‘moisturising’ and ‘velvety smooth’, there are a number of underlying ingredients that cause more damage than good over a long period of time.
What we first need to understand is that our skin is a complete sponge. It absorbs 60% of whatever you put on it. Think about all those late nights you forgot to take off your makeup or wash your face after a particularly muggy day. Skin can be left dirty and clogged which in turn leads to pimples.
From face creams to eye creams, serums to toners, there are literally thousands of skin care products available, yet most people have no idea what 90% of the ingredients in their skincare are let alone how damaging they could be.
It is claimed that women who are using makeup on a daily basis are absorbing almost 2kg of chemicals per year into their bodies. According to a survey by Skin Deep, on average, respondents used nine products daily with an alarming 25% using 15 or more. This a scary amount of unknown ingredients being applied to skin everyday.
To make it easier when picking your skincare, we have listed the top 8 ingredients to watch out for when selecting your products and what they mean for your skin to ensure you are selecting the best ingredients available.
(SLS) Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, and other sulfate-based detergents
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or SLS as it is commonly caused is an ingredient which is used in car washes, garage floor cleaners, engine degreasers and currently in 90% of personal care products that foam. The effects of using this ingredient have been linked to eye damage, depression, laboured breathing, diarrhoea, skin and eye irritation. Not only are they harmful, but they are extremely drying to skin. They have been shown to change the structure of skin protein making it susceptible to sun damage and accelerated ageing.
(PEGs and PGs) Propylene glycol, polyethylene glycol
PEGS are found in everything from personal care products, baby care and also sunscreen. Known also as Propylene Glycol, they act as binders and plasticise ingredients and are designed to enhance the penetration of other ingredients into the skin. Dioxin is a by product of this process which has been linked to cancer, reduced immunity, nervous system disorders, miscarriage and birth deformity. This is an ingredient you do not want being absorbed into your skin.
Parabens (methyl, butyl, ethyl, propyl)
Parabens are preservatives for skincare products to survive for months to years in your bathroom cabinet. Generally the average shelf life for a skincare product in Australia is up to three years. Parabens are known endocrine disruptors (chemicals that interfere with hormones in the body) that have been linked to cancer and hormonal imbalances. Parabens have also been found in breast cancer tumours in skin.
Phthalates (DBP, DEP, DEHP, and DMP)
Phthalates are usually used to create fragrances in cosmetic products. They are known endocrine and fertility disruptors. Thank Goats range is infused with natural oils such as sunflower seed oil, cranberry oil and grapeseed oil instead of synthetic fragrances.
Used frequently in a lot of acne products, Benzyl Peroxide can act as a mutagen which produces damage in DNA. There are natural alternative to this products such as witch hazel extract, goats milk and aloe vera which we have used in Thank Goats range instead of a chemical alternative.
DEA (Diethanolamine), MEA (Monoethanolamine) and TEA (Triethanolamine)
DEA, MEA and TEAs help products to create foam in products such as cleansers and body washes. These ingredients are irritating to the skin and can cause dermatitis. Oil and milk based cleansers are much better for your skin, such as Thank Goats gel cleanser which uses goats milk and oils to clean the skin. Oil cleansers will also prevent your skin from being stripped of natural oils as well as balance the oil production on your face.
Formaldehyde has many uses, one in particular is as a disinfectant and preservative. Always be cautious of products containing this as it is a carcinogen, skin, lung and eye irritant.
EDTA (ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid)
EDTA is in many products as a preservative, to stabilise it, or to create foam. EDTA is a ‘penetration enhancer’ meaning although it doesn’t particularly absorb very well into the skin, it disrupts the surface of skin so that other chemicals can get in easier.